FESTIVALS: IDFF Artdocfest Riga 2021 Announces Winners


    RIGA: The International Documentary Film Festival Artdocfest ran in Riga and outside the city from 28 April to 3 May 2020. The main prize was awarded to Silent Voice directed by Reka Valerik, while the main prize of the Baltic Focus competition was awarded to Restless Memories by Latvian director Elīna Lange-Ionatamishvili.

    As cinemas in Latvia are still closed, the films were screened for a limited number of audiences consisting of one household in various venues (a farm, a film studio, a women’s prison, and others) followed by a Q&A with the film’s director. The rest of the screenings are planned to be held in August 2021 in cinemas.

    The festival has two competition sections: the Artdocfest competition (with 21 titles) and the Baltic Focus competition (consisting of 10 films produced in or coproduced with Baltic countries). The main award of the Baltic Focus competition is named Herz, thus honouring the Latvian documentary filmmaker Hercs Franks (1926-2013).

    The members of the jury, who gathered physically in Riga, were the Russian film critic Anton Dolin, the director of the National Film Centre of Latvia Dita Rietuma, and the journalist Artemy Troitsky. The Baltic Focus competition jury worked remotely and was composed of the Danish documentary film consultant Tue Steen Müller, the Russian director Alina Rudnitskaya and the Italian associate professor of University of Cagliari Massimo Tria.

    Artdocfest was established in Russia in 2007. Since 2015 it was partnering with the Riga IFF as a non-competitive section for documentaries, but since 2018 it was an international documentary competition section within the Riga IFF. The first single standing festival was planned to run in November/December 2020, but it was postponed to late April 2021 due to the pandemic. Along the film screenings, the festival also had a symposium dedicated to theoretical discussions on documentary cinema.


    Artdocfest Competition:

    Grand Prix:
    Silent Voice (France, Belgium)
    Directed by Reka Valerik

    Best Director:
    Viktor Kossakovsky for Gunda (Norway, USA)

    Special Mention:
    The Earth is Blue as an Orange / Земля блакитна, ніби апельсин (Ukraine, Lithuania)
    Directed by Iryna Tsilyk
    Coproduced by Moonmakers
    Supported by the Lithuanian Film Centre

    Baltic Focus Competition:

    Artdocfest 2021 logoMain Award:
    Restless Memories / Nemierīgās atmiņas (Latvia)
    Directed by Elīna Lange-Ionatamishvili
    Produced by Mistrus Media
    Coproduced by the Latvian Academy of Culture

    Best Director:                        
    Giedrė Žickytė for The Jump / Šuolis (Lithuania, Latvia, France)
    Produced by Moonmakers
    Coproduced by VFS Films, Faites un Voeu (France)
    Supported by the Lithuanian Film Centre, the National Film Centre of Latvia

    Special Mention:
    One Life / Vienas gyvenimas (Lithuania)
    Directed by Marija Stonytė
    Produced by Moonmakers
    Supported by the Lithuanian Film Centre